World No. 1 Iga Swiatek advances to Indian Wells semis

League: Tennis

Posted on: 15 Mar, 2024 at 05:14 AM

Credit: Jay Calderon/The Desert Sun / USA TODAY NETWORK

World No. 1 Iga Swiatek of Poland reached the BNP Paribas Open semifinals when former World No. 1 Caroline Wozniacki of Denmark retired in the second set of their quarterfinal match Thursday in Indian Wells, Calif.

Wozniacki, who won at Indian Wells in 2011, held a 4-1 lead in the first set before Swiatek rallied for a 6-4 win. Wozniacki took a medical timeout in between sets for a foot issue, then played only one game in the second set before pulling out of the match. Swiatek, seeking her second title at Indian Wells in three years, won the match 6-4, 1-0.

"I have huge respect for her," Swiatek said. "I'm sad that it had to finish that way, but I hope she is going to recover and be ready for Miami."

Wozniacki, 33, who returned from a three-year retirement last summer following the birth of her two children, saved three early break points and took a 3-1 lead. Down 4-1, the 22-year-old Swiatek broke Wozniacki and snapped a 4-4 tie with her fourth break point of the game.

Next up for Swiatek in the semifinals will be No. 31 seed Marta Kostyuk of Ukraine, who beat No. 28 seed Anastasia Potapova of Russia 6-0, 7-5 in just 68 minutes.

In their only previous meeting, Swiatek posted a 6-3, 6-4 fourth-round win over Kostyuk at the French Open in 2021.

"I practiced with (Swiatek) in Doha. I was really looking forward to actually playing her in the match," Kostyuk said. "I think it will be a great match.

"I don't know what else to say, because I'm excited, and I played her in Paris three years ago, and it was a bit different match. We were both in different positions. Even more exciting now."

Against Potapova, Kostyuk broke her opponent's serve three times in the first set to easily win the set.

In the second set, Potapova put up much more of a right, battling back from down 3-0 to break Kostyuk three times and eventually tie the set at 5-5. Leading 6-5, Kostyuk broke Potapova one last time to clinch the victory.

The other semifinal will feature third-seeded Coco Gauff of the United States and ninth-seeded Maria Sakkari of Greece.

Gauff got past China's Yue Yuan 6-4, 6-3 in 94 minutes before Sakkari rallied past 23rd-seeded Emma Navarro of the United States 5-7, 6-2, 6-4.

--Field Level Media